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  1. Default PA To Great Smoky Mountains (Tips/Suggs)

    Hi there,

    I'm 24 y/o and planning a good ol' fashioned soul searching roadtrip with my best friend from Pennsylvania (outside philly) to Tennessee (GSMNP) and back.

    Looking for suggestions for routes - and any tips on some cool things to stop and see along the way.


  2. #2

    Default Go West, Young Man

    Hello Wrassler,

    At approximately 0200hrs on Saturday 24 October, a major rockslide closed I-40 at the 2.6 mp just inside NC. As of today, both sides are closed and the NCDOT is saying "anything from a few weeks to several months" before it re-opens. The posted detour is I-26 from Asheville to I-81 in the Johnson City, TN area, thence south down I-81 towards Knoxville to rejoin I-40.

    That said, there are innumerable smaller, non-interstate roads crossing the Smokies. Just be aware of the possibility of them being rather more heavily traveled with I-40 being closed.

    Depending on just where you're starting from outside of Philly, you could travel down the east or the west side of the Blue Ridge. The west side, with I-81 taking your the length of Shenandoah Valley, would be what I personally favor, as I abhor Baltimore/DC traffic. With some notions, from you, as to what kind of sights you enjoy (cultural, military history, natural scenery) many regulars here can offer suggestions. One possibility is to jump on/jump off of the Blue Ridge Parkway and/or Skyline Drive enroute down or back. From about Roanoke all the way to northern VA, you're never > 20-30 minutes from the crest where the BRP or SD runs.

    Have fun planning and taking your RoadTrip.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    US-441 is the highway that runs through the park. To get to it from the north, you can take I-81 to I-40 to Exit 407. From the south, take Exit 27 off I-40 onto US-23 and take that to US-441. The BRP's southern terminus is 441 right by the park's south entrance.

    I don't see any reason why you would have to use the closed stretch of I-40.

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